I had a full fledged interaction with the constabulary today.
It went well. Zooming on my bike
via every shortcut toward the subway station –
like Apollinaire – scores! – Rangers! –
There’s an oft empty little park but today
one side of it was swarming with kids and teachers,
wildly unpredictable for a cyclist
so I went around the park the other way
and presto, they’ve got two giant policemen there
stopping people who – car or bike – didn’t
come to full stop at the stop sign.
No one comes to a full stop at that very open
wide view intersection unless someone’s crossing or in the way.
(I for one never run anyone over and just get out of the car’s ways…
Needless to say every passerby on wheels was being processed.
It was like being carded. And at the same time, it was
being. They were nice. If I had to do it every day
I’d choose another route or not go –
Our neighbourhood here legitimately is
the safest mplace in North America
this is sheer John Toryism
maybe he’s a Tory and the harpercons asren’t
but rather oil mongers from a failed tea party sect of terrorism
go on rcmp csis army take down the scandella’s
with billions in false advedrtizxing party promotion
and cruel criminal failures of the constitution
and self interested spending
some half baked theoretical politics
..I myself have no political following and am against following
but my politics for roughly 25 years
would have been better than elected
end of the day though all this scanner data
john tory’s google earth
I knew I’d not stopped at the visible stop sign
and that my bike has no bell or light and I wear no helmet
meaning I could be lectured for half an hour and ticketted
for hundreds of dollars. Grim.
I pull to a stop and have the sense of relief – I’m on the way to work
so there’s not a thing controversal about me –
no mickey nor ought else, just yesterdays’ newspapers
and the honey lemon lozenges I have to prevent throat catches
on the subway – that have lasted all winter , and trala, I have
no record of any kind so I just go full on with cooperation and respectfulness
I’ve still got it. They loved me.
One was about 6.8 and the other about 6.6
so that was weird. Giant polite white guys, damned impressive.
Really clear spoken, non-inflammatory, clear and firm and definite,
but most importantly is clear, this is exactly whats happening.
one likely 40, the other more like 29 or so, if that,
hard to tell age with really tall people.
Pure patience as the 6.8 40 yr old took my health card
into his cruiser and typed things in for twenty minutes.
Shrugs when I had to say no, I don’t have a drivers license
or anything with my address on it. Only the health card with photo.
And the throat lozenges. That and a maroon coloured jersey
no one else would wear. People know it’s me. Thats all I got.
Took so long the younger cop suddenly laughs.
We’ve been standing there like statues for ever
and it seems like he wants to give up the ghost,
say ‘Obviously everyone on a bike rolls through there
and no park go’ers have ever been hit, and obviously
I’m not doing anything else, but try to go to work,
perfectly nice reasonable person doing the same little bike ride
he’s done for 15 years to that same subway station in all seasons
without incident as either perpettrator or victim of crime –
Ive been neither for 33 straight years in the area
minus 1989-92 where I had identical results in Vancouver.
(People have tried to get after me, but failed.
And I have a full on strong and intense preference
to not harm people or animals or damage anything
and so ~
The 29 year old 6.5 guy after deformalizing a little and conversing
about crime in the area – I think he’d also noticed I was a fair
bit older, and civil, and not some rampaging freewheeller rawbrain out there
so we discussed traffic issues in the area, –
the subtleties of the dooring issue – ‘like rifles, they open their door – boom’
but we both knew that tickets and creating tension about it
won’t help with the instinct in a car to be talking and pop the door open
as you’re getting out, breaking off conversation with the person who gave them a lift *
a politeness to the favour of liftgiving that costs we bicyclists our lives
and well being. I’ve been a car passenger
When suddenly deciding to get out at a red light
from in traffic, the haste and complexity of doing it quickly
and expressing enough thanks is nearly impossible.
You’re checking over your shoulder and talking to the driver
and preparing to get out of the car all at once.
Busses are the only ones that do it right, not opening the door
until at the stop. Yet it seems obvious to say hey we’re stopped anyway
and do this fast exit.
Just then another bike comes whirring around the corner
and the 29 year old steps out there, now he looks 6.8
hand out, and I watch a cyclist enjoy the rhapsodic bliss
of encourtering two giant police of a sudden, while hurrying to work
guilty of going past a stop sign.
And in the same moment the now 6.9 one comes over
a neck and head taller than me, so odd to look up to someone
to that extent, as I haven’t conversed with anyone that much taller than me
since grade 7, A fit but thick and strong 6.9
he gives me back my health card,
says today they are issuing warnings
and you’ve been nice to me so I’m going to let you go
with a warning. Gives me this whole typed up thing
that I did not read at the time. And lost by the time I was at work.
It fell out of my pocket and I have no idea what was on it.
Lost either on the streets or in the subway
or on the bus because I forgot all about it
til telling Molly at work about the occurance.
Tiring workday then once home bike to the bus station
to get my ticket for Saturday, then long tiring uphill back
and up a stiff cement incline to a noxious busy downtown street
a mass of police in bright yellow jackets. Weird as well.
and the light just turning yellow as I get there exhausted
with a long uphill ride home to finally terminate the workday.
At least 8 police in near enough distance to see my
bike has no bell. And I’m standing there on my bike
beside them facing the long uphill of that intersection
with zapping annoying traffic from all angles
thinking just how tiring it would be
to have one of them make an issue of the
paraphenalia on my bicycle. Physical day work
extra complexity to journey to work,
long ride to make sure I get my tickets at the greyhound station
long ride ahead when i’m ready to lie down and nap
and my right leg had had more than enough through the day.
And I hear one of them say “The day went better than expected
pretty well in fact” – and the light turned and I heliumed off
go by more police ahead, no idea why so many downtown today
I get past that area and no sooner into regular biking streets
I’m nearly doored by this guy who launches his car door out of nowhere
almost deliberate, and I do this big fan out move on my bike
and look to say what hell and the guy looks angrily at me
and I hear him shove his door out even more forcefully
making a point because he was mad at how I looked at him
for nearly dooring me.
Tomorrow I shall be on the island.